Archive for category: Technology

How to set a Static IP on Armbian

By default your device IP is assigned by your router DHCP server and can change from one start to another. This might not be an issue but sometimes you may want to always have the same IP assigned to your device. For instance, when we installed Home Assistant on our Orange Pi Zero, we would prefer to always have the same IP to access Home Assistant.

Here I’ll show you how to setup a static IP in an ethernet connection in Armbian tested on an Orange Pi Zero (Armbian 5.59 stable Debian (stretch) 4.14.65).
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Home Assistant Authentication System

Starting on release 0.77 Home Assistant use by default its own authentication system and it will require you to create the owner’s user account in the first access to the frontend. With this system, every user of Home Assistant could and should have its own user account which can be created by the owner’s user account. Let’s see how.
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How to setup a VPN on a DD-WRT router

If you have read my previous article on VPNs you already know the advantages of using a VPN and the risks of not using one and hopefully you are using one now. If you haven’t subscribed to a VPN yet I leave you a link here for a great discount.
Many VPN providers, such as NordVPN, which is the one I’ve been using for years and recommend, provide apps for iPhone, Android and other systems to access their VPN servers. However, there are devices, such as an AppleTV, that do not have an app or other direct way to connect to a VPN server.
For this type of cases, having your home router connected to a VPN is the best solution. Furthermore, it’s much easier to have your home router connected to a VPN than to install a VPN application on each of the devices that connect to the Internet in your household.
Not all routers have the same way of connecting to a VPN or supporting the same protocols. Here’s how to set up a VPN on a DD-WRT router using the OpenVPN protocol. If you want to know more about DD-WRT or how to install it on a Linksys WRT1900ACS I recommend you to read this other post.
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How to install Home Assistant on an Orange Pi Zero

If you’re here, you probably know what Home Assistant is. If not, you can take a look at my previous article about Home Assistant.
Probably the easiest way to start with Home Assistant is with a Raspberry Pi, but instead of using one of these I chose to install it on a different board, an Orange Pi Zero.

Why use an Orange Pi Zero for Home Assistant?

Well, compared to a Raspberry Pi 3, an Orange Pi Zero is a pretty capable board, powerful enough for running Home Assistant in a smaller footprint at a very reasonable price (links below).
The lack of an HDMI port in the Orange Pi Zero is absolutely no problem in this type of application. And the power consumption is slightly lower than on a Raspberry Pi 3.

In this post I will show you how to install Home Assistant in a Python virtual environment on an Orange Pi Zero running Armbian, however, these steps are likely to work on most boards running debian-based systems.
Using a virtual environment will prevent your Python installation and Home Assistant installation from impacting each other.
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How to install Armbian Debian on an Orange Pi Zero

For those who don’t know, Armbian is a Debian or Ubuntu based Operating System for ARM single board computers. It is supported on board such as Orange Pi One, Orange Pi Zero, NanoPi Neo, Rock64, Pine64, Tinker Board, Banana Pi and many others. It is like what Raspbian is to a Raspberry Pi and its installation is not much different. I’ll show you here the steps needed to install Armbian Debian on an Orange Pi Zero but it will be similar for any other board.
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